TYR Tactical

The North Face Doesn’t Want Your Firearms Business Logo On Their Clothing

SanMar is well known as a company which offers embroidery and screening of company logos on clothing (including brand name) for uniform and other promotional use. Recently, they announced that they were introducing The North Face brand into their offerings.

Understandably, TNF reserves the right to approve the logos added to their clothing. However, something seemed a bit heavy handed; they completely prohibit the sale of their garments into the firearms/ammunition industry. This document shows their policies.


While we are sure that The North Face isn’t the first company to do this, and won’t be the last, we also want you to know that they aren’t just singling out the firearms industry. They prohibit the sale of their garments for use in tobacco and adult entertainment channels. Full disclosure, we have turned down advertising from the adult entertainment industry because we don’t think it fits our focus.

We also want to be clear that this policy isn’t SanMar’s, but rather The North Face’s, which is owned by parent company VF Corp. Now here’s one for you. VF Imagewear Inc provides uniforms to federal law enforcement, including DHS. How’s that for some irony?

We respect TNF’s right to restrict who they associate with, but we also want you to know their policy, so you can wisely choose how to spend your money.

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42 Responses to “The North Face Doesn’t Want Your Firearms Business Logo On Their Clothing”

  1. Aaron says:

    Private Label Clothing companies will procure North Face Products via wholesale and place logos for a company. So this is dumb to turn away business.

  2. rearmount says:

    Another reason to spend more money with Outdoor Research. TNF was the cat’s meow in the 90’s, but companies like Arcteryx, OR, and Patagonia have since surpassed them in terms of innovation and design.

    • Jeff S says:

      I bet Patagonia won’t be far behind.

      • rearmount says:

        I’ll be honest, if I need a jacket, I usually first turn to OR or Arcteryx. But I love Patagonia’s Regulator line of fleeces. I practically live in a R1, R2, and R3 during cooler weather.

        I do find it funny that Patagonia does not like to not draw attention to their involvement with military contracts, like the PCU line and the jungle uniforms. That may upset some of their client base LOL. In contrast to OR who showcases their Mil/Gov line and Arcteryx with LEAF.

      • PPGMD says:

        Yeah Patagonia is HippieR’us I am surprised that they don’t already have a policy like that.

        • d says:

          Check the post above yours; Patagucci has been supplying SOCOM with uniforms, with their brand name, for a while now.

          This isn’t where TNF lost credibility. It was when they decided to market fleeces to college chicks and make a line of cheap products to sell in places like Dick’s.

          • PPGMD says:

            I saw it. To most of these company’s support the firearms industry is seen as being separate from taking Uncle Sugar’s money on a contract. The steady stream of income blinds them to their hypocrisy.

            • Kemp says:

              Supporting the military and supporting gun culture are two different things.

              • Jack Griffin says:

                Not in America. The whole minuteman militia citizen-soldier volunteer mentality. Gun culture is where a lot of GI Joe comes from, where a lot of GI Joe goes back to. Ex: How many kids of the ’80s (later GWOT adventurers) grew up wearing surplus BDUs and shooting dad’s AR-15? *raises hand*

              • Lcpl1066 says:

                Patagonia makes the clothing that America’s best depend on. Sometimes those people die wearing those clothes. Please remember that political opinion and patriotism are not the same.

            • 6.8 pumper says:

              I agree.
              Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, and Tom Brokaw are fishing buddies. Brokaw is a known anti-gun personality.

              I notice that Patagonia seems to keep a low profile on their military product line. I would think that if many of the fervent Patagonia customers were aware of their military profiteering, they would likely become disillusioned with the Patagonia corporate message versus the real world, profit based, operation.

              I wear Patagonia and think they make great stuff. I just don’t think many of their customers are aware of the different business units that they have under the umbrella…

              • SSD says:

                I note that my relationship with them is very hot and cold. They do some really great stuff for the military but the higher ups don’t want the word out there.

          • straps says:

            This. Most TNF gear is designed for wear in harsh environments like server rooms.

    • Jester says:

      Someone can correct me if I’m wrong, but OR has been around for a long time, they just haven’t advertised and tried to push their way into every discount sporting goods store on the planet like TNF has.

      I’m always reminded of this picture: The North Face–For Outdoor Adventures Across School Campus.


  3. Billy says:

    Never cared for **** FACE. Even after the widow of the company founder donated most of their personal land holdings in southern Chile to the Chilean government, their philosophy and heavy handedness over use and control never sat well with me.

    Dead Bird for me!

    • John F says:

      I know, right? How dare Tompkins donate 10 million acres to the Chilean government to try to save one of the last wild places!

  4. Jeff S says:


    I can vouch for SSD… I have TNF winter jacket and windbreaker with agency patches straight from VF.

    Time to switch to OR from Pro Motive for personal gear.

  5. Ray Forest says:

    Why do I suddenly want to buy a piece of commercial TNF and have it embroidered with a firearms logo then get it into a heavy FB and IG rotation?

  6. iggy says:

    trivial at best, but i will defend their choice to do it. plenty of consumers to go around.

  7. Mick says:

    What adult entertainment co wanted to advertise here?

    Asking for a friend…

  8. james says:

    Their quality has lacked since moving off shore… to much fashion not enough function IMO

  9. Eric s says:

    Guess I wont spend any money on Northface ! No great loss!Also i am sure someone out there will embroider it !

  10. EzGoingKev says:

    Every piece of TNF gear I have purchased has failed to impress me.

  11. Unimog says:

    First rule of “Grey Man Club” you don’t wear logos on your “Grey Man Club” clothes.

    They are just keeping with the code.. Your welcome.

  12. Fudman says:

    Interesting… TNF was not always so left leaning. They were an original supplier of some components to the SPEAR program back in the 90s. The SPEAR program then cloned some of their products (GEN Franks’ fleece jacket sure looked like a Denali jacket, LOL!), which caused some bad blood. So this policy is not entirely surprising.
    I hate to see people bust on Patagonia based on their marketing image. While that image smacks of granola and hippy surfers, they have been a major supplier of clothing technology and products to SOCOM. Actions speak louder than image. FWIW, unlike many vendors (VF) that make a lot of $ off the gov’t, Patagonia has probably lost money during their support of SOCOM, so not every company looks to profit in all their actions.
    Bottom line, I echo SSD’s position regarding TNF’s rights. This country allows for freedom of choice and expression.

    • SSD says:

      I remember those garments Fudman. As I recall, TNF lost some money on that deal.

    • Joe says:

      Well said. I won’t slam TNF or Patagonia for working to maintain a specific corporate image and will respect their guidelines. However, this does further solidify my preference towards Arc’teryx.

  13. G1E says:

    For years now you can read where NFace has been letting soldiers down on the various forums. More than a few in the industry refer to then as ” The Dark Face”. Let us not forget they are “Vanity Fair”, which puts things into perspective.

    I have to agree with the comments above on Patagonia, Imagine if they had a true Military division in their company, we would see great designs built durable enough to last more than a deployment. The mere fact they refer to it as Government Sales indicates much. Unfortunate as their 12 piece MARS System is effective, fragile but effective.

    • John F says:

      Umm, Vanity Fair is a clothing conglomerate (Lee, Vans, Reef, Wrangler, etc)

      Not the magazine that covers the Hollywood elite.

      • G1E says:

        Every one of their brands and subsidiaries speaks to a similar context. I do recall a pair of vans done in Multicam, once. I wear Smartwool but don’t remember them being forwarded as military equipment.The Force ( Horace Small)being an exception to a degree with their police uniforms.

  14. Bill says:

    The gun culture might be the most hypersensitive and paranoid bunch of consumers in the United States. I’m pretty sure PETA members are less sensitive to the policies of their rain jacket manufacturers. This is hilarious.

  15. Alpha2 says:

    It is their right to do what they want in keeping with their image. My personal opinion is no great loss there is many other brands that make far superior garments that are much more functional than TNF.

  16. Esteban says:

    Actually, Patagonia has a little unknown sewing company with a little subdued non-discipt logo. (google ‘Blackbeard flag’) for the logo in the garments. They have sewed stuff for NSW and DHS and the like. I have several of their garments I acquired in my contacts.